Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



College of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences


Sport and Exercise Psychology

Committee Chair

Andrew Hawkins

Committee Co-Chair

Sean Bulger

Committee Member

Kristen Dieffenbach

Committee Member

Deborah Hendricks

Committee Member

Robert Wiegand


This study analyzed two teacher and their corresponding student behavioral systems to determine whether discipline-specific ongoing education may play a role in gaining expertise in physical education. Field systems analysis (FSA) was used to analyze an all-encompassing categorical system, which was created by induction and then used to deductively analyze the two teachers and their corresponding students. Interview data were used as well, in conjunction with FSA, to understand more completely what role each teacher's ongoing education may have played in their behavioral systems. Both teachers received training from the same undergraduate physical education program and were of the same gender and had the same years of teaching experience. These two teachers taught the same content to the same number of students in one physical education lesson. The results exhibited differences in each teacher's behavioral system, as the teacher with ongoing education within-field exhibited a higher percentage of instructional elements that were more common, complex and predictable in their elemental chains. The teacher who received ongoing education out-of-field exhibited more managerial elements in their behavior system, while exhibiting less common, complex and predictable elemental chains. The students' data exhibited much of the same phenomenon, as the students who were taught by the within-field teacher exhibited more content learning elements that were more common, complex and predictable in their elemental chains. The students who were taught by the out-of-field teacher exhibited more non-content learning elements, while exhibiting less common, complex and predicable elemental chains. The interview data paralleled the behavioral systems for each teacher, as the within-field teacher revealed an ongoing education tailored to delivering physical education content to students, while the out-of-field teacher revealed how his ongoing education dealt with more managerial concerns.